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How to make a compact mirror with a fabric insert

Updated February 21, 2017

Personalise a compact mirror with fabric or a monogram and give it as a gift. It's also a convenient item for your own purse. The best compact includes both a standard and magnifying mirror, and may have lighting as well. Some compacts hold a photo, fabric or another item on top, making them ideal craft projects. Add your own fabric to create a personal and useful accessory.

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Purchase mirrored compact blanks.

Cut a 100 by 100 mm (4 by 4 inch) fabric square from a piece of fabric. Trace the opening in your compact mirror onto your fabric square. Embellish the centre of the square with embroidery or other accents, if desired--keep all embellishments in the space of the opening for your fabric insert. This is an ideal place for a hand-embroidered monogram.

Add thin interfacing or a lightweight lining if your fabric is too sheer. Light iron-on interfacing can provide the structure and stability required, as can a layer of thin muslin under your fashion fabric.

Cut the square of fabric into a circle, allowing an adequate margin to secure the fabric to the top of the compact mirror. Spray your fabric with an adhesive or apply a bit of lightweight fabric glue. Lay your fabric insert into place in the mirrored compact. Trim the edges of the fabric as needed in your compact mirror with a fabric insert.

Reassemble your compact mirror, securing the fabric insert into place. Make sure there are no loose threads visible and that the fabric is quite secure. Clean the mirror and the outside of the compact to remove any smudges.


Consider trying a fabric photo transfer for this project.


Make sure your fabric is well secured. Avoid using fabrics and threads that may bleed dye when wet.

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Things You'll Need

  • Mirror compact with space for fabric or a photo
  • Light spray adhesive
  • Fabric of your choosing
  • Scissors
  • Embroidery supplies

About the Author

With a master's degree in art history from the University of Missouri-Columbia, Michelle Powell-Smith has been writing professionally for more than a decade. An avid knitter and mother of four, she has written extensively on a wide variety of subjects, including education, test preparation, parenting, crafts and fashion.

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